Enlightenment isn’t Personal

Enlightenment isn’t Personal

When we first hear about enlightenment, we may be inspired. But we’re likely to see it as something we can achieve or get. Perhaps we think “I can get enlightened, then all of my problems will be gone” or “everything will be perfect”, or similar.

However, enlightenment originates in our universal nature, in the Self that underlies all experiences and form. It is the cosmic Self or Atman that wakes up to itself in Self Realization (Cosmic Consciousness). It is not the person or me that wakes up. In fact, it is the me we wake up From.

Thus, enlightenment isn’t personal. In fact, it’s not about you at all. It’s post-personal development.

We shift, gradually or not, from it being about me and my life to it being about the whole, about community, about commonality, and about quality of life.

Instead of being something we do, enlightenment is something we allow. It is a letting go of doing. And yet, some things will arise to support culturing that development. We may engage in healing, meditation, prayer, satsang, a church, or similar. Some of that may seem very much like something being done. And yet in a curious way, real spiritual practice is an undoing. It is a practice of letting go. It is a preparing the ground so that when grace arises, the clarity will be there for it to be recognized.

It’s not about you at all. And it never was. (laughs)

But to be clear, enlightenment is not some abstract thing. It is lived right here, in this life, in these relationships – right in the apparent person. But we then know ourselves as the universal living through the person rather than being a separate person.

Last Updated on June 16, 2016 by

Average rating 5 / 5. Vote count: 1

No votes so far! Be the first to rate this post.


  1. Amaryllis

    “Instead of being something we do, enlightenment is something we allow. It is a letting go of doing.”

    Yes, in the falling-away of angstrom-thin layers of outer-clutter and distraction (and on a lucky day, even in the midst of those) I see/am this process appearing to unfold …

    Lovely post 🙂

    1. (laughs) I’ve used the analogy of peeling the onion but have certainly found some of the layers a fair bit thicker than that. As in bucketloads of debris. But nothing that a good dose of light won’t rinse away.

  2. Paul Darwin

    A remarkable paradox. Doing nothing, when you ARE actually doing something!

    Engaging in healing, meditating, praying, attending a satsang or a church ceremony . . . in spiritual practice, amounts to an undoing. . . Letting go. . . . doing nothing.

    Wow, spirituality certainly works in mysterious ways!

    1. Hi Paul
      Well – it’s more that you appear to be be doing something and in the process learn about non-doing.

      But yes, there can certainly be various practices that arise that clearly, in retrospect, helped prepare the ground. But it also becomes clear it wasn’t a me doing them. It was only that the me was claiming the activity as “mine” and something “I did”.

      When we shift into the witness or observer mode, then it is obvious. It was never me doing the doing in the first place.

      Then – not so mysterious. 🙂

  3. Jim

    Perhaps anymore all one needs is the pure intent of the heart. The atmosphere is full of teachers, and a technique such as TM to get the earnest soul into the flow, is enough. Then the attention on that, one-pointedness, the growing of enlightenment, first the beautiful realization of the Atman, the inner flame that does not flicker in a windless place, then the richness expressed, as the outer world comes alive, all success, Unity, Oneness, then all devoted to Brahman. A wonderful rhythm to surrender to!

  4. Davidya, however you would define the YOUness of you, I’d like to take a moment to give a special shout-out to you, David, for the magnificent service you do through this blog.

    From my perspective as an Enlightenment Coach, so many descriptions of higher states of consciousness are rampant now, replete with cult overtones or undertones, conflations of belief systems with experience, and many other sorts of problems.

  5. Besides helping your blog readers, I think you are doing a great service to humanity — help for a form of completion in collective consciousness.

    There IS need for supplying consciousness perspective. Big thanks to that “you” we know as David Buckland or Davidya.

    1. Thanks, Rose. Yes, I hear from many people concerned about something a teacher has said. And the group from the Sophia panel has continued to discuss issues around some teachers, the value of peer support, and so forth.

      “help for a form of completion in collective consciousness.”
      You word that very well. Good insight.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Pin It on Pinterest